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Agronomía Mesoamericana

On-line version ISSN 2215-3608Print version ISSN 1659-1321


BARRAGAN-HERNANDEZ, Wilson Andrés et al. Heat stress and blood-sucking diptera count in multi-level silvopastoral systems. Agron. Mesoam [online]. 2019, vol.30, n.3, pp.751-765. ISSN 2215-3608.

Introduction. Silvopastoral systems are livestock scheme production schemes with the potential to mitigate the negative effect of the environment on animal productivity. Objective. The objective of this work was to evaluate the effects of multi-stratum silvopastoral systems on heat stress and the population of hematophagous dipterans in beef cattle. Materials and methods. Between May and October 2014, in the Turipaná research center in Córdoba, Colombia, the behavior of Cebu Brahman and Romosinuano animals was analyzed in two silvopastoral arrangements (aSSP) with diversity in their composition and plant stratification (p-Arbust with two strata and p-Arbust-Arbor with three strata) and in a treeless prairie, with a random complete block design. In each treatment, the environmental temperature (TA) and relative humidity (RH) were evaluated, and a temperature-humidity index (ITH) was constructed. In animals the skin temperature (TP) and respiratory rate (FR) were evaluated at two hours of the day (6:00 and 13:00), and hematophagous diptera (CDH) were counted between 8:00 and 10:00 a.m. The data were submitted to a variance analysis for mixed models in the variables TA, HR, TP and ITH and generalized mixed models for CDH and FR. Results. The environmental variables were influenced by multiple factors including: the change in sampling schedules, and the silvopastoral arrangement. The highest environmental load (ITH) was observed during the afternoon, an evaluation that significantly influenced the response in FR with increases that reached 2.1 times more in the Pasto treatment, against 0.8 in p-Arbust-Arbor. Conclusions. The aSSP evaluated presented comparative advantages against the reduction of heat stress and the count of hematophage flies under conditions of the middle valley of the Sinu River. The aSSP p-Arbust managed to keep fly counts lower over time.

Keywords : agroforestry; ectoparasites; respiration rate; climatic factors; zebu; meat animals.

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